Headphone jack mute on Inspiron 6400 - Audio - Laptop - Dell Community

Headphone jack mute on Inspiron 6400


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Headphone jack mute on Inspiron 6400

  • I have an Inspiron 6400 running Win XP.  The headphone jack does not work; the speakers DO work.


    Device Manager shows that 3 Base System Devices do not have drivers - Device Incidence ID shows "PCI\VEN_1180&DEV....."


    I tried reinstalling the Sigmatel driver, no joy.  Which is the correct driver and procedure to fix this problem?




  • Ausearch,


    Other than checking the configuration settings of the audio properties I don't know the answer so I was waiting for someone else to reply. As far as I know a missing driver would not affect the headphone jack. It could be a hardware problem, not software. To check, run the audio test in Dell Diagnostics.


    It is an interactive test designed to narrow down a problem to either the software or hardware. To run Diagnostics restart the computer and as soon as it starts to boot up hold down f12. Select 'Diagnostic' from the boot menu. The computer will run its pre-boot assessment tests (PSA) before the Dell Diagnostic starts. These pre-boot tests play some beeps and tones through the system speaker but this doesn't test the rest of the audio hardware, so you still need to let Dell Diagnostics run after the pre-boot tests finish. Dell Diagnostics plays an instrumental piece of music complete with drums, so if you only hear some tones then you have only run the pre-boot assessment test.

    When Dell Diagnostics opens, select 'custom', then the audio test. This will test your audio system independently of Windows and drivers, meaning it doesn't matter if they are working correctly or not.

    [If you have ever reformatted your hard drive then the Diagnostics partition might have been wiped off. If the Dell Diagnostics option fails to open, run it from the Drivers and Utilities (Resource) CD if you have one.]

    Dell Diagnostics will play some audio and ask you whether you heard it. If you don't hear the music during the test through the headphones it definitely means there is a hardware failure.

    If you do hear the audio that means the hardware is okay but there is a problem with the software or configuration.


    [There is one hardware problem that might pass Dell Diagnostics test. There is a senser pin in the jack that triggers the switching software that lets the audio signal go to the speakers when a plug is removed. Your symptoms are the opposite of those of a bad senser pin, but if there is something wrong with it Diagnostics won't catch it.] 



    Jim Coates -- 14th year on the Dell Laptop Audio boards -- since 2/6/04